A record 245 people tried to jump off San Francisco’s Golden Gate Bridge in 2017, but fewer succeeded, thanks to the city’s men and women in blue.
The number of successful police interventions with potential bridge-jumpers jumped from 184 in 2016 to 245 in 2017, while the number of confirmed suicides fell from 39 to 33 over the same period, according to a bridge authority report cited by The Marin Independent Journal.
Five new police officers were added to the bridge’s security detail in 2017, bringing the number of officers available to thwart suicide attempts to 36.
In May of last year, construction began on a $211 million project to build a suicide deterrent system. According to an April 13, 2017 press release on the bridge’s website:
“In May, contractors will begin installing temporary fencing along the Bridge approaches and around the tower legs. They will create detailed measurements so they can begin manufacturing the stainless steel net. In mid-2018, they will begin installation of the suicide deterrent. Similar deterrent systems have been used in various locations around the world, but never in this scale. The deterrent at the Golden Gate Bridge will span 1.7 miles of roadway on each side. It will be located 20 feet down from the sidewalk and extend 20 feet out, over the water. The suicide barrier will be built over four years, with an expected completion date in 2021.”